Baby white red squirrel

Update - 9-20-11
He's still alive! And doing better today. He is more wary of me, but doesn't run away if I don't make sudden movements. I gave him more peanuts, which he seems to love, who doesn't? Smarter today too, he climbed up into my cherry tree to eat them, better protected from predators. Since I knew today that he didn't need any help (other than perhaps a few peanuts, bird food, and a water source) I felt free to photograph away. Better pictures today. I hope he sticks around and doesn't get eaten! It probably helps that I'm photographing him for 30 minutes every day, at which point all the other wildlife stays away. Perhaps I'll see him again tomorrow.

I came home to find a baby white red squirrel in my driveway. My first impression, was "my is that guy cute, I wonder if I can take a quick photo before he gets away?" But then as I inched closer and closer to him, I noticed that even for a red squirrel, this guy was rather small... I darted inside to google squirrels and see if he was potentially in need of help.
Yesterday I saw a black cat (not mine, indoor only) dart into my yard and take off with one of my red squirrels. Which lead me to think perhaps that was this little guy's mom, and he might be orphaned... I left peanuts out for him, and he let me get really close to give them... too close, he even ran up to me and touched my shoe.
The google magic told me that if the squirrel isn't smart enough to be afraid of you, he's probably in need of assistance, so I planned where he would stay overnight while I looked for a wildlife rehabilitator. When I went back outside (with gloves on) to pick him up and put him in the cage, he was gone. A bit more google searching and I learned that at a certain point the mom kicks the babies out so that they can find their own homes for the winter, but that they all stick around the same area and are helped by their mother for a little bit. Since he left, I'm hoping he's in that stage, although I'm worried about that black cat... and my neighbors dog... Looks like the squirrel the cat absconded with yesterday may have been an unsuspecting sibling. This poor little white guy has his work cut out for him if he's going to survive. Hopefully he will come back for peanuts and avoid the cat!

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